The region’s premier sportscar championship, the Porsche Carrera Cup Asia, thunders into the Southern Chinese city of Zhuhai this weekend for Rounds 4 and 5 of the 12-race season. The FIA-sanctioned international series will bring 28 of the brand new Porsche 911 GT3 Cup (Type 991) racing cars to the 4.3km Zhuhai International Circuit for the first time and, along with the impressive fleet of thoroughbred GTs, its talented field of sportscar drivers.
Leading the charge to the Pearl River Delta are early overall front-runners Team Porsche Holding’s Martin Ragginger of Austria, 2012 Porsche Carrera Cup Asia champion Alexandre Imperatori of PICC Team StarChase and leading Chinese driver, Tung Ho-Pin of Budweiser Team Absolute Racing. The trio have been battling it out at the front since the season got underway in March, and the absence of defending champion, LKM Racing’s Earl Bamber, who embarks upon his first full Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup season in Barcelona the same weekend, will only add to the ferocious competition.
The talk of the Porsche Carrera Cup Asia paddock however has been the remarkable impact of the new Junior Development Programme introduced by Porsche China at the start of the season. Three of the four talented young Chinese drivers enrolled in the programme occupy the top half of the overall championship points standings: Zhang Da Sheng (21) of Zheng Tong Auto is currently fifth, followed by Jason Zhang Zhi Qiang (20) of Team C&D and series newcomer Zhang Zhen Dong (21) of Team Basetex. With all three becoming quicker and visibly more competitive with each outing, it is just a matter of time before they begin to threaten the leading drivers.
The fourth Junior Development Programme driver, Bao Jin Long of Team Synsanly, has endured an unlucky start to his debut Porsche Carrera Cup
Asia season, but the reigning Scirocco R-Cup China champion and Formula Masters China Series regular will be working hard to make his mark in Zhuhai.
In Class B, the fiercely-competitive category for non-professional drivers, Malaysian hotshot Alif Hamdan (23) of Nexus Racing continues to impress, topping the leaderboard with an impressive margin of points after just three races. However, chasing him every inch of the way is hungry pack of experienced and determined drivers. OpenRoad Racing’s Francis Tjia will be looking forward to this weekend at a circuit on which he is always quick, while Dorr Havelock Racing’s Yuey Tan of Singapore will have the bit between his teeth following his triumphant Class B victory in Round 2. Wayne Shen, class champion in 2012, and brother John, who make up the two-car Modena Motorsports team, will also be on the hunt for victory this weekend.
With several of the Porsche Carrera Cup Asia regulars unable to make the Zhuhai weekend, the field will include a number of non-series registered drivers, although all have raced with the series before.
At LKM Racing, Siu Yuk Lung is joined by his brother, Siu Tit Lung, who is standing in for regular driver Bamber, and Tan Ian Mao of Singapore returns to the series in place of compatriot Mok Weng Sun at Clearwater Racing. Peter Li of China replaces Mak Hing Tak of Hong Kong at Kamlung Racing at the weekend, while Benny Lim will drive Kenneth Lau’s Porsche 911 GT3 Cup (Type 991) and Nigel Farmer will take the place of Michael Choi.
Two free practice sessions on Friday, May 9th will be followed by a single qualifying session, the fastest lap setting the grid for Round 4 and the
second-quickest for Round 5, and a 12-lap race on Saturday. Round 5, also run over 12 laps, will be held on Sunday, May 11th.
With the new Porsche 911 GT3 Cup (Type 991) set for its debut in Southern China this weekend, Porsche motorsport fans from across the region – including those in Hong Kong, Macau and across Guangdong Province – are expected to be out in force for a Porsche Carrera Cup Asia weekend like no other.
Porsche Carrera Cup Asia – Rounds 4 & 5
Provisional Entry List
No Driver/Nationality Class Entrant/Nationality
2 *Benny LIM (HKG) B Benny Lim (HKG)
3 Michael S. (INA) B OpenRoad Racing Team
5 Yuey TAN (SIN) B Dorr Havelock Racing (SIN)
6 Nigel FARMER (HKG) B Nigel Farmer (HKG)
7 BAO Jin Long (CHN) Team Synsanly (CHN)
8 Ro.C. Skyangel (SIN) Team Yongda Dongfang (CHN)
9 LI Chao (CHN) Team Betterlife (CHN)
11 Ringo CHONG (SIN) Team Kangshun (CHN)
12 *TAN Ian Mao (SIN) B Clearwater Racing (SIN)
16 Wayne SHEN (HKG) B Modena Motorsports (HKG)
18 ZHANG Zhen Dong (CHN) Team Basetex (CHN)
20 Rodolfo AVILA (MAC) Team Jebsen (HKG)
21 Francis TJIA (HKG) B OpenRoad Racing Team (HKG)
22 SIU Yuk Lung (HKG) B LKM Racing (HKG)
23 *SIU Tit Lung (HKG) B LKM Racing (HKG)
28 John SHEN (HKG) B Modena Motorsports (HKG)
33 Samson CHAN (HKG) B Samson CHAN (HKG)
51 Johnson HUANG (TPE) B BC Racing Team (TPE)
55 ZHANG Da Sheng (CHN) Zheng Tong Auto (CHN)
58 TUNG Ho-Pin (CHN) Budweiser Team Absolute Racing (CHN)
66 Jason ZHANG Zhi Qiang (CHN) Team C&D (CHN)
68 *Peter LI (HKG) B Kamlung Racing (HKG)
72 Alif HAMDAN (MAS) B Nexus Racing (MAS)
78 Bentley YEUNG (HKG) B Tiger Racing Team (HKG)
86 Martin RAGGINGER (AUT) Team Porsche Holding (CHN)
88 Egidio PERFETTI (SIN) Mentos Racing Team (SIN)
98 Henri RICHARD (USA) B Silicon Tech Racing LLC (USA)
99 Alexandre IMPERATORI (HKG) PICC Team StarChase (CHN)
Source. Porsche Carrera Cup Asia